the libertarian relate to the Iranian question? What is the Iranian
all governments since they violate the libertarian non aggression
principle (NAP). But how does the Iranian government compare with
other such illicit entities, when viewed through the eyeglasses
of the NAP. Not too badly. No. I take that back. Pretty darned
good, I should say, instead. At least in the modern era (I am
no ancient historian), this country has followed a foreign policy
very congruent with libertarianism. They have not been invading
other nations that have not attacked them first, unlike the U.S.
(The Iraq-Iran war was a defensive one of the part of the latter;
the former attacked them first, and they merely fought back; rather
successfully, as it happens.) Iran does not have military bases
on foreign soil, again in sharp contrast to the U.S. which has
some 1000 of them located in about 160 different countries. Iran
has never incinerated massive numbers of civilians with atomic
weaponry, as has, again, a certain country located south of Canada.
At the time
of the present writing, the U.S. and numerous other gangster countries
(I speak comparatively here; all governments consist of criminal
gangs, but some are more, much more, egregious than others) has
imposed sanctions on Iran. Evidently, these nations think that
Iranian barriers to trade (tariff and quotas) are not sufficiently
high. Ron Paul has quite properly called these sanctions an
act of war against Iran. Can they be justified? Certainly,
and even more, if Iran had attacked us first. Have they done so?
Of course not. Not even the warmonger in chief of the U.S., that
winner of the Nobel Peace prize of all things, makes that claim.
(In the view of the imperialist western neo-conservative press,
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is a crazed lunatic who has made all sorts
of threats in this regard, but it is my understanding that mistranslations
have an explanatory role in this). Therefore these sanctions are
unjustified, and should be removed forthwith.
is that while Iran has not yet engaged in any foreign military
adventurism, it is planning to create nuclear weaponry which would
enable them to do so, and that once armed, they would indeed use
these diabolical devices against innocent people. However, Grand
Ruhollah Khomeini, a deeply religious man and leader of the
Revolution which overthrew the hated (and US imposed) Shah
of Iran., is on record as opposing such bombs, on religious grounds.
Further, the present Supreme Leader of Iran, Ali Khamenei, is
of the same opinion.
But let us
suppose, arguendo, that Iran does indeed develop the nuclear bomb.
Is this compatible with libertarianism? Not at all. According
to the view of Murray N. Rothbard, Mr. Libertarian, it is not,
if only because its power cannot be confined to the guilty. However,
let us now ask an entirely different question: will Iranís contrary
to fact conditional attainment of this weapon save lives? This
is purely an empirical question, an entirely speculative one.
glance, the answer is a clear No. The thought of this bomb being
detonated in the Middle East, or anywhere else in the world for
that matter, is horrific. Hundreds of thousands of people, probably
millions, would perish. That is the case against this thesis that
the bomb would save lives.
another side of the argument, however. Is North Korea safer from
attack now that it has nuclear capabilities, than before? It is
difficult to answer this question in the negative. Almost certainly,
it is safer. But is it likely to use this weapon on South Korea,
or Japan or the U.S. This is unlikely in the extreme. Its leaders
full well know that were this to occur, their entire nation, including
themselves and their families, would vanish in a puff of dust.
Would a non-nuclear invasion of North Korea cost lives? Yes, indeed.
Tens of thousands or more. So, in attaining the bomb, North Korea
has likely made its own citizens safer, and those also of any
analysis applies, too, to Iran. That country is far less likely
to suffer the fate of Iraq having a nuclear device in its possession
than without one. Its leaders know full well that were they to
use such a weapon against Israel, that would spell their doom.
The U.S. and the U.S.S.R. fought a cold war of several decades.
Not a shot was fired between them. Quite possibly, the doctrine
of Mutual Assured Destruction (MAD) is what saved Russian and
American lives. A similar analysis applies to Iran and Israel.
of the argument that if Iran gets the bomb, so too, then, will
others? Next might be Japan, then Egypt, then a country in South
America, then one in Africa. If so many nations wield this weapon,
will we not then be less safe? And, therefore, should we not move
heaven and earth to ensure that this does not occur in this Persian
Let us consider
which nuclear nations are most likely to actually use this weapon.
I base this prediction on how warlike they have been recently,
in terms of foreign wars or invasions. Russia has had internal
fracases (Chechnya), but has not invaded any foreign country since
Afghanistan. France and England are stable countries but the latter
gets bad marks for entering Afghanistan, and failing to negotiate
with the Argentineans and the former for Mali and Algeria. India,
Pakistan and China have all thrown bullets at each other, and
the latter is now "making waves" against the Philippines,
Japan and South Korea over a few rocky islands. North Korea has
not invaded anyone. The least stable of all the nuclear powers,
in terms of foreign aggrandizement, is surely the U.S. So if the
leaders of this country are so worried about the spread of nuclear
weapons, they should lead by example.
the U.S. has once engaged in this barbaric practice in Hiroshima
and Nagasaki, it is still a stable country, and is unlikely to
do so again (all such prognostications must necessarily be highly
have offered, in a civilized manner, to sit down with their American
enemies and discuss matters. This has not occurred. Just who is
it that is the barbarian in this particular episode?
I write not
only from a libertarian perspective but from a personal one, too.
I am Jewish. I am a member in good standing of the group, Jews
for Ron Paul. I have numerous friends and relatives who live in
Israel. I am not sure of this, but it is quite possible that they
will be safer, not more at risk, with a nuclear armed Iran. Unhappily,
I know very few Iranians on a personal basis. But I do know one.
His name is
Houshang Memarzadeh. We both lived in Canada for a time. During
that era, this third degree black belt in Shotokan karate was
my sensei or teacher in this sport. My son Matthew and I both
became brown belts under his tutelage. My Matthew, and his two
sons Aptin and Omed, practiced team karate kata together; they
sparred with each other. The three of them were friends. Our two
families met for meals. I have rarely known a nicer or gentler
man than Houshang Memarzadeh. After Canada, we went our separate
ways. Me to Loyola University in New Orleans, him and his family
back to Iran. The thought of him and his two sons fighting my
friends and relatives in Israel fills me with dread. I am horrified
and appalled at the prospect. I only wish that Ron Paul were now
president of the U.S. If he were, instead of that drone throwing
Nobel Peace Prize winning war-monger, we would all be much safer.
A president Paul would have by now withdrawn all U.S. troops from
foreign lands. There would be no stranglehold sanctions against
in Europe in 1913 did not know that soon the world as they knew
it would blow up in their faces. I hope and trust that we in 2013,
one hundred years later, are not soon to meet the same fate.